13 Days of Pumpkin Beer: Day 1 – New Belgium’s Pumpkick

Guest blog post by Alia Broman

I LOVE Fall! Crisp, clear days warming up to the 80s, and chilly nights requiring fuzzy fleeces.  Crunchy leaves, early morning frosts, and the anticipation of binging on candy provided by strangers.  But as I am at the age where it is inappropriate to go trick-or-treating without a child of my own, I am sequestered in my apartment, searching for the same enthusiasm for the month of October that I once had.

Then it hit me; the other reason I love October is pumpkins!  And what go better together than pumpkins and beer, or rather, pumpkins IN beer?!  Unfortunately, I don’t have access to enough pumpkin beer to blog about a different one for 30 days, but I’m going to try my hardest to blog about them for 13 days.  I will report on their color, ABV, cost (based on my local liquor store in Denver, Colorado), availability, and of course, pumpkiny-goodness!  Overall scores of awesomeness will be one to four pie pieces, as an ode to my anticipation of homemade pumpkin pie in November.  One pie piece is old and rotten, two is a green pumpkin from the grocery store, three is orange fresh from the pumpkin patch, and four is a hand-carved, smiling jack-o-lantern.

#1 – Oct 1, 2013: Pumpkick by New Belgium Brewing (Fort Collins, CO)   


Year of conception: 2013

ABV: 6%

Color: light amber, with a nice orange glow at the bottom of the glass from reflected light

Cost: $8.99 + tax for 6-pack of 12oz bottles

Availability: all liquor stores great and small

Description by New Belgium Brewing: “PUMPKICK is brewed with plenty of pumpkin juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice, but it’s the cranberries and touch of lemongrass that send your taste buds sailing.”

Pumpkick has pleasant aromatics, with defined hints of nutmeg and cinnamon.  The first sip is a tangy assault on your tastebuds, but after sips two and more, the beer simply melts onto your palate.  It’s a very easy beer to drink, but also a very easy beer to forget.  As for the touch of lemongrass, I would argue that there are more than a few stalks per bottle, that culminate in a sour aftertaste.  The lemongrass and cranberries also seem to insult rather than complement each other.  That being said, my hat is tipped to my hometown brewery for entering into the stiff competition that comes with all seasonal ales.

Pie Pieces: 2 – Green 


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